September 5, 2021
, Indianapolis, IN
The National Hot Rod Association’s (NHRA) cornerstone eventuality and world’s biggest drag-racing competition, reason any year during Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis and affectionately referred to as a “Big Go,” owes many of a status and warranted repute to a story and repute for charity adult noted racing, cutthroat competition, challenging hurdles and drama; a 67th annual Dodge//SRT U.S. Nationals did not disappoint.
Don Schumacher Racing Funny Car motorist Ron Capps powered his Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat from a No. 6 qualifier position, to a contingent of 3.9-second passes to improved Justin Schriefer, Robert Hight, and Alexis DeJoria, and modernized to customarily his second final rejecting spin entrance during a legendary eventuality for a eventuality to strive for a fugitive Dodge//SRT U.S. Nationals Wally esteem he has chased for 27 years.
The final set adult a duel between Capps and associate Funny Car maestro Tim Wilkerson in that a DSR HEMI®-powered appurtenance finished a initial pierce on a approach to laying down another plain sub-four second pass. His opponent, however, was means to compare a bid and lift brazen for a win.
While Capps’ runner-up finish during a “Big Go” wasn’t a finale he had hoped for, as a satisfaction esteem a outcome propelled him from a fifth place position in a Funny Car points standings during a commencement weekend, to tighten out a NHRA’s unchanging deteriorate in a tip spot. The tip 10 qualifiers for a arriving seven-event playoff array now see their points reset, and as a No. 1 seed, Capps is rewarded with a 20-point lead to start a “Countdown to a Championship” during subsequent weekend’s Mopar Express Lane Nationals Presented by Pennzoil during Maple Grove Raceway.
Another certain opening by a Cruz Pedregon Racing group began with a Snap-on Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat subordinate fourth on a strength of a solitary subordinate run of a weekend after dual Saturday sessions were rained out. Cruz Pedregon, a three-time personality during Indy, gathering true down a line with a span of 3.92-second runs to dispatch Terry Haddock and J.R. Todd, and afterwards modernized to his third uninterrupted semifinal showdown to face-off conflicting a contingent eventuality winner, Wilkerson.
The third Dodge and Mopar brand-supported Funny Car of Matt Hagan was sidelined for this weekend’s competition. After a fortifying NHRA universe champion motorist withdrew from foe after contrast certain for COVID-19 and pushing duties were entrusted to Tommy Johnson Jr., efforts to validate a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye entrance were thwarted by a automatic emanate and rain, ensuing in a DNS (Did not start). As a result, no points were awarded and Hagan slipped from streamer a difficulty to starting a playoffs from sixth place in a Funny Car championship standings.
In Top Fuel competition, final year’s runner-up finisher Leah Pruett was looking to take her Dodge//SRT Redeye dragster for another run for a prestigious Indy title. From a fifth symbol on a eliminations ladder she began her expostulate with an opening spin win over No. 13 seed Joe Morrison.
In a quarterfinals, Pruett knew she was adult conflicting wily line conditions in a right line and finished certain she gave herself any advantage. She launched with a near-perfect greeting time, clocking a 0.002-second light, though a line showed no forgiveness and slowed Pruett’s progress, enabling opposition Josh Hart to locate and pass her to measure a win. With a result, Pruett clinched a No. 4 symbol to start her fourth “Countdown to a Championship” playoff run.
While her appearance in Top Fuel was finished for a day, Pruett still had another possibility to take home a Wally trophy, this time in a Sportsman category. A rival margin of 23 entries strike a entertainment lanes for a Constant Aviation Factory Stock Showdown (FSS) eliminations during a “Big Go” and among them, as a tip HEMI®-powered entry, was Pruett who competent her 2021 Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak in a No. 12 symbol on a basement of her singular Friday dusk pass during 7.965 seconds/ 166.70 mph after sleet cleared out any possibility of removing in another run on Saturday. Despite a miss of line time, Pruett went into a opening spin with a certainty of carrying warranted dual runner-up finishes during a final dual events during Denver and Topeka.
Her initial pairing was with DSR stablemate and No. 13 qualifier David Davies who was creation his U.S. Nationals entrance aboard his 20201 D H Davies Racing Mopar Drag Pak. Pruett took a early lead with a discerning 0.060-second greeting time to her teammate’s 0.095, and incited on a win lights with a 7.953 second pass during 176.93 mph to corner Davies’ equally plain 7.959 sec./175.89 mph effort.
That set adult a second spin conflict for Pruett conflicting No. 1 qualifier Joseph Welsh, who had had a advantage of induction a second subordinate run to acquire a tip seeding before sleet finished everybody else’s eventuality to excellent balance their car. While Pruett powered her Mopar Drag Pak to another plain and unchanging 7.958 sec./176.07 mph run, her foe took advantage of a quicker start and a 7.831/177.65 pass to finish her hopes of advancing any further.
The third DSR FSS motorist Mark Pawuk debuted his mint 2021 Empaco Equipment Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak by recording a peppery career-best 177.32 mph run in a opening spin of eliminations with a discerning 7.973-second pass. Unfortunately, Pawuk opening was overshadowed by that of No. 3 seed and contingent eventuality pretension personality Jesse Alexander, who’s 0.025-second greeting time interconnected with a 7.924 sec./170.36 mph pass finished his day.
The NHRA’s “Countdown to a Championship” seven-event playoff array starts with subsequent weekend’s Mopar Express Lane Nationals Presented by Pennzoil during Maple Grove Raceway nearby Reading, Pennsylvania on Sept.12-14, 2021.
ADDITIONAL NOTES and QUOTES
Matt Hagan, DSR Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye
(Did Not Start)
Ron Capps, DSR NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
(No. 6 Qualifier – 3.907 seconds during 326.08 mph)
Round 1: (0.053-second greeting time, 3.903 seconds during 325.77 mph) contra No. 11 Justin Schriefer (0.083/6.496/102.64)
Round 2: (0.077/3.952/326.79) defeats No. 3 Robert Hight (0.056/12.125/75.88)
Round 3: (0.091/3.909/327.74) defeats No. 7 Alexis DeJoria (0.077/3.992/323.04)
Round 4: (0.075/3.946/326.63) detriment to No. 8 Tim Wilkerson (0.088/3.912/320.36)
“First and foremost, a thoughts are with Matt Hagan and his health is on everyone’s mind here. That’s a good competition automobile with Dickie Venables and Hagan and we design to go by that Dodge to win a competition and a championship. It’s uncanny not carrying them in a uncover today. We have these tiny goals we set and one of those was to be a unchanging deteriorate points leader. Coming in here there were a lot of drivers with a possibility to squeeze that tip spot, it was flattering bunched adult and sparkling for a fans. Things fell a approach today.
“We had some tough matchups with Robert Hight in a second spin and Alexis (DeJoria) in a finals. And Tim Wilkerson in a final round. That final spin is accurately since we competition on a line and not on paper. we schooled a prolonged time ago not to design a win. we don’t caring how good your automobile is running. Tim is a good example. You don’t know what he’s going to do. We both went up, and talked before a run and we were going to chuck down. He outran us. It stings. Hats off to them. They threw down that 0.91 in a line nobody suspicion could run that time. Give them credit.”
Cruz Pedregon, Cruz Pedregon Racing Snap-on® Tools Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat
(No. 4 Qualifier – 3.896 seconds during 323.66 mph)
Round 1: (0.080-second greeting time, 3.929 seconds during 323.66 mph) defeats No. 13 Terry Haddock (0.111/13.081/69.63)
Round 2: (0.132/3.920/324.20) defeats No. 5 J.R. Todd (0.059/4.328/224.36)
Round 3: (0.068/8.704/87.34) detriment to No. 8 Tim Wilkerson (0.089/3.984/325.37)
“A semifinal finish after subordinate in a fourth position is a good day. We ran a 3.92 in both a initial and second round. In a semifinal, a line had warmed adult a bit so we finished adult spinning a tires conflicting contingent eventuality personality Tim Wilkerson. Overall, we demeanour behind during it and consider it’s a biggest competition of a year and anytime we can get to a final 4 during an eventuality like this, is unequivocally a credit to a group and their tough work. It was one of those races where we were on gait to reap them down and win a whole thing, though a line conditions run-down as it got warmer, and that was a finish of a eventuality there.
“As we demeanour brazen and demeanour during a countdown, we congratulated a team, everybody that did a good pursuit to get ourselves into a countdown. We’ll start a playoffs eighth and we’re all going to be positioned with 10 points separating any position from second place by a tenth, so it’s usually a matter of how we do in these final 7 events. We’re vehement and confident that we’re going to have a automobile to beat. The Snap-on collection Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat has been unequivocally on a hurl lately. The fact that we’ve been in a semis or improved in a final 3 events in a quarrel (with a runner-up finish during Brainerd) unequivocally bodes good for a group and a confidence.”
Leah Pruett, DSR Dodge//SRT Redeye Dragster
(No. 5 Qualifier – 3.755 seconds during 322.88 mph)
Round 1: (0.077-second greeting time, 3.933 seconds during 252.37 mph) defeats No. 12 Joe Morrison (0.071/4.331/224.36)
Round 2: (0.002/3.897/318.84) detriment to No. Josh Hart (0.057/3.790/325.37)
“The U.S. Nationals is routinely a biggest marathon of a competition as we customarily exam right before it, take partial in a array of events, and have 5 subordinate sessions and afterwards competition on Monday. It’s been utterly a conflicting this year. This week we had usually one qualifier and everybody got a genuine immature line on competition day. It was overwhelming to get by a initial spin with a unequivocally unchanging automobile even with some issues during a tip finish powerwise.
“It’s no tip that a left line is many some-more rival to competition on than a right lane, and we knew that going in. we sat in a automobile for roughly fifty-five mins conflicting Josh Hart, as a Safety Safari did a best pursuit that they could on line prep. This is where my group unequivocally comes together. we had a review with Neal after forty mins and after looking during a track, they didn’t consider we were going to make it off a line, so when they told me to ‘do whatever we wish to do as a driver’, we got excited. This is your time. This is a Dodge//SRT U.S. Nationals. Usually as a motorist we theatre unequivocally shallow, we try to get a best E.T. that we can, though we wanted to take any advantage that we could. So we took a flattering good cube out there, meditative we could confuse him. we went 0.002 though usually didn’t have adequate energy since we had to behind down a HEMI to get down that right line and it was not adequate to get around Josh Hart in that second round.”
FACTORY STOCK SHOOTOUT:
Leah Pruett, 2021 Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak
(No. 12 Qualifier – 7.965 seconds during 166.70 mph)
Round 1: (0.060-second greeting time, 7.953 seconds during 176.93 mph) defeats No. 13 David Davies (0.095/7.959/175.89)
Round 2: (0.087/7.958/176.07) detriment to No. 1 Joseph Welsh (0.016/7.831/177.65)
“Recently, a Factory Stock Showdown Dodge Drag Pak has achieved in a purchase on Sunday’s and creation competition day unequivocally exciting. Today, we usually did not have adequate conflicting a No. 1 qualifier in a other lane. We put on a good race, though it was a energy government situation. Running early in a morning for E1, we were means to find that energy and afterwards we had about 6 hours before a second round. We usually weren’t means to spin on a win light. We still have a clever reason in a points standings in a Factory Stock class. We will be contrast before out subsequent competition during St. Louis and I’m vehement about that. We have a good group with Kevin (Helms) and AJ (Berge) and we wish to get behind to going rounds in a few weeks.”
Mark Pawuk, Empaco Equipment Mopar Drag Pak
(No. 22 Qualifier – 13.781 seconds. during 75.07 mph)
Round 1: (0.061-second greeting time, 7.973 seconds during 177.32 mph) detriment to No. 3 Jesse Alexandra (0.025/7.924/170.36)
“Unfortunately with not removing down a line in Q1 on Friday and sleet all day yesterday, it put us behind a 8 turn entrance into Sunday. We did make a large improvement. It ran 7.97 during 177 mph, that is a best speed we’ve run in a prolonged time. We’re streamer in a right instruction with this Empaco Drag Pak. We had a motorist blunder in a initial round. we was a small late. We got a new automobile blues out of a approach and we’ll run improved during St. Louis.”
David Davies, D H Davies Racing Dodge Challenger Mopar Drag Pak
(No. 13 Qualifier – 7.969 seconds during 176.79 mph)
Round 1: (0.095-second greeting time, 7.959 seconds during 175.89 mph) detriment to No. 12 Leah Pruett (0.060/7.953/176.93 mph)
“We’re apparently vehement to be racing on Sunday. Anytime we competition a group automobile and Leah Pruett, that’s a tough draw. We mislaid by 6 thou and that’s a right approach to remove if we have to remove a race. Losing to a teammate creates it reduction painful. I’m vehement about what we’ve finished with a car. We’re starting to get this thing dialed in. We were happy with a runs this weekend with customarily dual laps and we’re looking brazen to a final dual Constant Aviation Factory Stock Showdown races during St. Louis and Vegas to get prepared for subsequent year.”
NHRA Championship Points Standings:
Following a Dodge//SRT NHRA U.S. Nationals during Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis
FUNNY CAR (season wins in parentheses)
1. Ron Capps (Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat) – 981 (1)
2. John Force – 938 (3)
3. Bob Tasca III – 937 (2)
4. J.R. Todd – 931 (1)
5. Robert Hight – 867 (2)
6. Matt Hagan (Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat) – 865 (2)
7. Alexis DeJoria – 835
8. Cruz Pedregon (Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat) – 825 (1)
9. Tim Wilkerson– 801 (1)
10. Blake Alexander– 519
TOP FUEL (season wins in parentheses)
1. Steve Torrance – 1389 (8)
2. Brittany Force – 978 (1)
3. Antron Brown – 839 (1)
4. Leah Pruett (Mopar Dodge//SRT) – 712 (1)
5. Shawn Langdon – 668
6. Mike Salinas – 646
7. Justin Ashley – 627
8. Billy Torrence – 621 (1)
9. Clay Millican – 594
10. Doug Kalitta – 588
FACTORY STOCK SHOWDOWN
1. Aaron Stanfield –533
2. David Barton –396
3. Jesse Alexandra –372
4. John Cerbone – 342
5. Leah Pruett (2021 Mopar Drag Pak)– 332
6. David Janac – 314
7. Stephen Bell – 307
8. Dan Condon – 235
9. Arthur Kohn – 231
10. Doug Hamp – 230
DodgeGarage: Digital Hub for Drag Racing News
Fans can follow all a NHRA movement this deteriorate during DodgeGarage, a one-stop portal for Dodge//SRT and Mopar drag-racing news. The site includes daily updates and entrance to an online racing HQ, news, events, galleries, accessible downloads and merchandise. For some-more information, revisit www.dodgegarage.com.
@DodgeMoparMotorsports on Instagram
The @DodgeMoparMotorsports Instagram channel continues to share calm capturing Dodge//SRT Mopar drivers on a track. Fans can see movement from a NHRA Camping World Drag Racing Series and NHRA Sportsman grassroots racers, competing in classes such as Factory Stock Showdown, Stock and Super Stock, as good as additional motorsports series.
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